Air Namibia Entirely Ceases Operations
Earlier today, the airline has officially suspended all operations and has been put into liquidation by its only shareholder, being the Namibian government.
Air Namibia was the country’s national airline based in Hosea Kutako International Airport in Windhoek, with a secondary base in Eros Airport, in the same city, serving domestic traffic. The airline also has a fleet of Airbus A319s, A330s, and Embraer ERJ135 aircraft, serving destinations around Southern Africa, with long-haul service to Frankfurt. The government has been in contact with Air Namibia’s lessors, as confirmed by spokesperson Twaku Kayofa.
As a result of the suspension of operations, 600 employees will be laid off, with them receiving 12 months worth of their salary, as an ex gratia payment, although no extra benefits are being given. Passengers are also being instructed to contact Air Namibia to receive refunds from their bookings.
The cause of the collapse was an ongoing issue with lack of demand, only made worse with the COVID-19 pandemic, lack of profitability, high employee count, and an undesirable and grounded fleet, which eventually led the airline into its demise.
The Namibian government had not opposed the liquidation of the airline, noting that they couldn’t afford a bailout. Specifically, it would have cost about 7 billion Namibian dollars, on top of the 8.4 billion they had spent in the last decade, nearly doubling their expenses on Air Namibia, according to Iipumbu Shiimi, Namibian Finance Minister, also stating that the airline had a loss-making business model since its commencing of operations, noting that only 4 of their 19 routes showed profitability.